I'm seeing a tweet just now following up on today's earlier reporting by WaPo's Rosalind Helderman that both chambers and both parties have reached an agreement on FY 2012 appropriations, thus averting a government shutdown that will happen if they can't pass something by the end of this week.
If that's correct, I need to point out that I've been dead wrong about this one from the start. I'm not going to go back and link to the (multiple) times I've blogged about this, but I've consistently said that this was an underreported story, and that there was a good chance of a stalemate followed by a shutdown. Now, I'm sure I qualified it every time -- I don't think I ever made an absolute prediction beyond saying that there was a good chance -- and so technically I didn't make a "prediction" that turned out wrong. But overall, yeah, I was wrong about this one.
Of course, part of this is that both parties agreed to live with the budget caps they agreed to in the debt limit deal. But that still left plenty of room for argument, either about the numbers for different programs within those caps or, where I thought the problem would come, in policy riders. Apparently House Republicans didn't insist on anything that Democrats in the Senate and the White House couldn't live with, although so far at least there's very little reporting on exactly what happened. The sense from Helderman's story, and some other things recently, is that with Tea Partiers in the House placing a higher priority on voting "no" on the whole thing than on bargaining for their (other?) priorities, John Boehner was able to just ignore them and strike a fairly easy deal. What that requires is for the rest of the Republicans to be willing to vote for something that the Tea Partiers were voting against...and that's been the sticking point on the other showdowns this year. But I guess this time the dangers of voting with Nancy Pelosi and against the most conservative Members of the House seemed less risky than the dangers of a government shutdown (which, to be sure, would eventually end, which would mean that they would have to vote for it, which would get them back to what they began with plus a shutdown, which may be why they didn't want one to begin with).
I apologize for that last sentence, too.
The big lesson here? John Boehner seems to know what he's doing. Still.